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December 2006 Newsletter

You Are What You Eat

Dear Fellow Business Traveler,

Sometimes we take for granted what an amazing machine the human body is.  If you really think about, it's incredible that any of us survive as long as we do, considering the way we abuse it at time.  This month's Newsletter talks about how to take care of it by giving it the proper fuel it requires and deserves.  Appreciate your body and do something good for it.

Be sure to check out the newest additions to our Travel Fitness Blog.

To Your Health, 
Healthy Travel Network

squareEat Right, Live Well

1. The usual food and drink of a person or animal.
2. A regulated selection of foods, as for medical reasons or cosmetic weight loss.
3. Something used, enjoyed, or provided regularly: subsisted on a diet of detective novels during his vacation.
1. Of or relating to a food regimen designed to promote weight loss in a person or an animal: the diet industry.
2.         a. Having fewer calories.
b. Sweetened with a noncaloric sugar substitute.
3. Designed to reduce or suppress the appetite:

We have all heard the old saying "you are what you eat".  Now, as childish and silly as this sounds, there is great truth to it.  The human body is not a machine that only requires a tune up and oil change from time to time.  This amazing living organism that each of us posses operates by means of so many electrical and chemical reactions on a daily basis. 

If you are familiar with the concept of a wet cell battery, think of the body as such.  Electrical signals regulated by the pacemaker cause the heart to beat, and the actual pressure within the body creates the blood flow to and from the heart.  Now, all of these reactions have to be powered and that is where what we choose to put in our bodies dictates how well and for how long our bodies will last.  Cell walls are dependent on good fats to rebuild, just as the muscles are dependent on protein (amino acids) to rebuild and things such as calcium to contract.  There are thousands and thousands of details that could be given about each and every one of these processes and their end product, but what we all need to remember is that unlike a car, we can't just replace things that breakdown.  The human body is meant to last due to how we prevent the breakdowns from occurring. 

Preventive maintenance is the key.

The more active someone is, the more some of us travel and work all take tolls on our bodies.  Usually, when we travel a lot we suffer from bad diets, lack of proper sleep, stress, etc. and these things slow down the rebuilding of damaged cells and body parts.  So, when traveling, especially for work, you may not be able to help the amount of time you sleep, or adjust to the time changes as easily as you would like. Plus, you may not even be able to exercise as regularly as you would like.  The one thing that is in your control is what you choose to eat.  What you choose to use as fuel for your body during these demanding times is so very important, so take the time to put high quality fuel into your furnace and keep your body working at its full potential.

Things to keep in mind:

  • Consume complex carbohydrates for fuel instead of simple sugars

  •  Iin order to rebuild muscles (the heart is also a muscle) eat primary sources of protein such as cottage cheese, soy, lean meats

  • Smaller meals eaten throughout the day keep the body burning fuel at a much more efficient rate

  • Limit the amount of saturated fats (fatty animal products, creams) and increase the good fats (nuts, olive oil)

  • Cut back on stimulants such as caffeine when traveling in order to help maintain proper sleep patterns.

squareMore Helpful Information

There are so many wonderful resources available online for this topic, we hardly know where to begin.  But here are just a quick few that we really like to get you going. 

The American Cancer Society has a great page about nutrition.  Check out their Eat Right Challenge.

The National Institute of Health (NIH) has a good page on Healthy Eating.

HealthyEating.org is a good resource for helping to make choices about nutrition.  Check out their New Food Pyramids.

Web MD is always full of useful information.  Here is another great page from them about Health & Diet.

Travel Fitness Blog
Eat Your Fruits and Veggies
Comparing Diets: Which is the Best for You?
Hotel Delivery of Healthy Foods
Get a Good Night's Sleep